Monday, August 4, 2008

The 30-Minute Soundtrack to Some Entirely Uninteresting Event

Just a playlist I created a few days ago while going from Point A to Point B that I felt like posting. The common theme here is "songs I felt like listening to at the time". Original, no?

1. Give Up the Ghost - (Its Sometimes Like it Never Started)

Fantastic opening song, one that works well to build into the rest of the playlist. Only a minute long, it shows a more experimental side to GutG than the traditional Boston hardcore sound they usually employ. Makes a near-perfect segue into any similarly high-paced song.

2. Vendetta Red - Vendetta Red Cried Rape on Their Date With Destiny

The opening track off a pop-punk concept album dealing almost entirely with rape (Sisters of the Red Death). To call it a bizarre combination is kind of understating it a tad. Regardless of the subject matter, or the general crappiness of pop-punk, this kicks a fair amount of ass. Featuring a good deal of morbidity ('they made love to your face with a box cutter') and a strong set of pop hooks, this is Vendetta Red's catchiest and arguably best song.

3. A Perfect Circle - Blue

Call an optimist, she's turning blue
Such a lovely color for you

I just really love the chorus for this song. The sarcastic wordplay, the way the song builds directly to it everytime, the way Maynard's voice sounds almost indistinguishable from the music... it's a nice bit of passive impassionate catharsis. Cold and indifferent, yet strangely emotional.

4. Modest Mouse - A Different City

I'm a rather large (read: raging) Modest Mouse fan, so I figure this is as good a time as any to point out that Lonesome Crowded West and The Moon and Antarctica are two of the greatest albums of all time, both brilliant in their execution, and remain a true peak for Modest Mouse that they probably won't reach again. You can take pretty much anything else by this band, I don't need it. And while they have created individual songs since and before the two aforementioned masterpieces that reached similar plateaus, no album has even come close. We Were Dead... even bordered on mediocre.

Anyway, the reason I choice this song was because of the presiding feeling of isolation that permeates both the music and lyrics (I want to live in the city with no friends or family/I want to look out the window of my colour TV) and how that blends well with "Blue". Not to mention, the corkscrew guitar at the beginning is absolutely fantastic.

5. Please Inform the Captain This is a Hijack - Karma Collection Day

I've probably said all I have to on this band, but this is pretty easily my favourite song of theirs (including the self titled EP). It combines every positive aspect of PITCTIAH (the epic feeling, the revolutionary attitude, the layering of the guitars) to create the soundtrack for the next great civil uprising. Hypothetically speaking, o' course.

6. Smashing Pumpkins - Doomsday Clock

Say what you will about Zeitgeist, or Billy Corgan and his rather questionable poetry (*BLINKing WITH FISTSSSSSSSS*), but when the Pumpkins go heavy, good things happen. Like angels serenading the heavens with tunes of rejoicement, or something like that. It reminds me of back when I was just getting into music and listening to Melon Collie and the Infinite Sadness. Namely, having to wade through song after song of dreary dream pop when all I wanted was another "Zero". Hell, it didn't even have to be a "Zero", it could have been a "Fuck You", or an "X.Y.U." I was willing to settle. But noooo, just more ambient, airy textures with Corgan softly whispering over the drone of what sounded like James Iha dying inside (I could be wrong).

Anyway, Zeigeist was supposed to be the Pumpkins' attempt at a rock album. Well, it was, kinda. The dream pop remained, it was just turned into pop rock instead. Much better. A number of heavier songs salvaged the album though, and this is one of them. Heavy guitars, pounding aggression, Corgan whining like a scolded child that has been possessed by Satan, it's all there, and it's all relatively paint by the numbers. I mean, if you think about it. But I don't care. Because as far as the Pumpkins are concerned, it's really all I've ever wanted.

7. Transistor Transistor - And the Body Will Die

If I were to summarize the thoughts going through my mind as I listened to this song, the phrase "OMG THIS IS THE HEAVIEST FUCKING THING EVER" would probably appear quite a bit. It's not really true, but it has a certain esthetic quality to it. The guitars in this song act like stoner metal on speed; slow, drudging repetitive riffs turned into fast, drudging repetitive riffs. And oh my, it's a beautiful thing.

8. On the Might of Princes - For Meg

Possibly the greatest song ever, I think. Yeah, let's go with that. Blisteringly emotional, ridiculously intense... a perfect closer to a great album (and a decent playlist). Alternating between chants, screams and spoken word, the message presented always remains simple and honest. Not groundbreaking, not revolutionary, but sincere. Unreserved in both music and content. And fucking amazing.

where you are and where you want to be